1. CJ Cregg from The West Wing. She’s witty, she works at the White House, and she’s at least as smart as anyone I know. Plus CJ is, like me, bloody awful at dating and has terrible luck. That means she’s probably the only chance I have to actually impress someone with a date. (Also, anyone who presents the possibility of “The Jackal” after sex is automatically on this list.)
2. Kaylee Frye from Firefly. The obvious choice for just about any true geek. She’s simultaneously cute as hell, hot, and (under the right circumstances) elegant and classically beautiful. She’s also not as innocent as her unidentified-backwater-of-the-galaxy speech patterns suggest—the first time she meets Mal Reynolds is while having sex in the engine room with Serenity’s previous mechanic.
3. Felicia “Snoop” Pearson from The Wire. The definition of chill. She’ll fuck you up if it needs doing, but there is no way you can get her riled up. There’s something über-sexy about not giving a rabid fuck.
4. Willow Rosenberg from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Yeah, I know, she’s into girls. A guy can dream. Bonus points for bedding Dark Willow: world-destroying power = totally hot.
5. Beatrice from Much Ado About Nothing. Snarky, doesn’t take shit from anyone, and surprisingly vulnerable. It’s honestly really nice to be able to do something for someone else. Less nice when it involves killing your best friend, but nice anyway.
6. Black Hat Girl from xkcd. Not exactly a character, but she counts. And because you have to deal with the landmines in the driveway to pick her up for your first date.
7. Faith from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Because a, Eliza Dushku. ‘Nuff said. Everyone, at some point, dates a crazy person. May as well go all out and make her an occasionally murderous superwoman. Yes, she has serious psychological issues, but the thing is they’re out in the open. For comparison, Buffy drives herself into major (hidden) loneliness of command bullshit by having to be strong and independent all the damn time. I would much prefer to know what brand of crazy I’m buying, so I can be prepared for it and deal with it as necessary.
8. Guinivere from Legends of King Arthur. Because everybody wants to bed Guinivere. Shit, that’s like, half of the plot of Arthurian legend.
9. Suzie Derkins from Calvin and Hobbes. Because the whole point is that Calvin wants to date her. And because I was exactly like Calvin and pretended to hate the girls I liked when I was in elementary school.